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Articles on Water infrastructure

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A tidal drain at South Yarra, Melbourne, in 2008. The installation of litter-trapping equipment now prevents access. Photo: Victoria Kolankiewicz

What lies beneath: tunnels for trafficking, or just a subterranean service? Time to rescue these spaces from the conspiracists

What was once the stuff of urban legends now spreads virally through social media claims the tunnels beneath our cities are used for child trafficking. The truth is both more mundane and important.
The Rim Fire burned 256,000 acres of the Stanislaus National Forest and Yosemite National Park in 2013. (USDA Forest Service, Chris Stewart)

Buried in mud: Wildfires threaten North American water supplies

Wildfires reduce the reliability of city water supplies in North America. But active forest management provides a key to the solution.
How long has that water already been in the system? mike.irwin/Shutterstock.com

Water stays in the pipes longer in shrinking cities – a challenge for public health

In many municipalities, aging water infrastructure is serving fewer people than it was built to accommodate. Out of sight has meant out of mind – but resulting changes in water quality may affect safety.
A new report finds concerns about water infrastructure tops the list for Canada’s water providers. (Shutterstock)

Understanding the risks to Canada’s drinking water

World Water Day shines a light on the importance of safe, clean drinking water, but a new report finds Canada's freshwater systems are under stress.
A drain carries water but does little else, but imagine how different the neighbourhood would be if the drain could be transformed into a living stream. Zoe Myers

More than just drains: recreating living streams through the suburbs

Drains take up precious but inaccessible open space in our cities. Converting these to living streams running through the suburbs could make for healthier places in multiple ways.
The public and finance sectors – but not the government, it seems – are questioning the wisdom of investing in infrastructure for projects like the Adani coal mine. Lukas Coch/AAP

To get the ‘good debt’ tick, infrastructure needs to be fit for the future

If infrastructure is to meet the needs and challenges of an uncertain future, we need to move beyond the AAA ratings mindset and aim for net-positive social and ecological outcomes as well.
The 2016 storm that blacked out South Australia had everyone talking about a critical infrastructure failure. David Mariuz/AAP

What’s critical about critical infrastructure?

Critical infrastructure is our means of survival as an urban species. So, we must identify what is critical, for whom and how it might fail us.

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